An emphatic 86-point victory over St Kilda on Thursday night was the perfect tonic for a Richmond team peeved, but not panicked, by back-to-back defeats in the early part of its campaign.

The Tigers withstood an early barrage from a Saints outfit up for the contest, answering every challenge on their way to a statement 20.14 (134) to 7.6 (48) victory at Marvel Stadium.

Dustin Martin (34 disposals, five clearances, one goal) was the bullying force in Richmond's midfield, while Shane Edwards (29 disposals, seven clearances, one goal) provided the class as both produced vintage displays out of the centre.

St Kilda had an early spark, with Hunter Clark (33 disposals, three clearances) performing strongly and with Jack Steele (26 disposals, 10 tackles) competing as admirably as ever in the midfield.

But the reigning premiers, as they do so well and so often, gradually chipped away at the fight of their plucky opponents. The result was a 25-point buffer at the main break of a clash that had seemed relatively even just moment before.

Moments of respite from the relentless Richmond pressure were fleeting thereafter, as the Tigers piled on five consecutive majors on either side of the three-quarter time interval to drive home their advantage.

An undermanned St Kilda, by that stage, had run its race.

St Kilda's worries on the scoreboard were compounded by a groin injury to Jimmy Webster, forcing him to be substituted of the match, which added to the late and untimely omissions of Rowan Marshall (foot) and Zak Jones (soreness) beforehand.

ST KILDA  3.4  4.5  6.6  7.6 (48)
  3.3  8.6  15.12  20.14 (134) 

St Kilda: 
Higgins 2, Lonie 2, Hunter, King, Butler
Riewoldt 5, Lynch 3, Graham 3, Castagna 2, Rioli 2, Pickett, Edwards, Martin, Bolton, Aarts 

St Kilda: Clark, Steele, Coffield, Battle
Richmond: Edwards, Bolton, Riewoldt, Martin, Graham, Lynch, Cotchin

St Kilda: Jones (soreness) replaced in selected side by Dunstan, Marshall (foot) replaced in selected side by Hunter, Webster (groin)
Richmond: Nil

St Kilda: Long (replaced Webster)
Richmond: Ross (unused)

Crowd: 32,056 at Marvel Stadium